Sharjeel and Latif star as Pakistan thrash England
Left-hander Sharjeel made 59 and fellow opener Latif 59 not out as Pakistan, set just 136 to win, finished on 139 for one with 31 balls to spare to the delight of thousands of their fans at a packed Old Trafford.
Sharjeel faced 36 balls with seven fours and three sixes as he put on 107 in just 69 deliveries for the first wicket with Latif.
Right-hander Latif was in for 36 balls, featuring seven fours and three sixes, against an England team fielding the same side beaten in a last-over thriller by the West Indies in the World Twenty20 final in Kolkata in April.
Victory saw Sarfraz Ahmed win his first match as Twenty20 captain but England took the overall Super Series 16-12 after the four-Test series was shared 2-2 and the hosts won the one-dayers 4-1.
Pakistan’s win under the Old Trafford floodlights was set up by a disciplined display in the field after England were well-placed at 56 without loss.
Left-arm spinner Imad Wasim removed both England openers Jason Roy and Alex Hales on his way to a fine return of two for 17 in his maximum four overs without conceding either a four or a six.
Man-of-the-match Wahab Riaz, a left-arm quick, followed up with three for 18 as Pakistan cleverly mixed up their deliveries.
“Credit to our bowlers they bowled very well and then Khalid and Sharjeel played realy well,” Ahmed said.
He added: “I told the players that when we are playing T20 cricket, we want some energy and we want some good fielding on the ground. The players did this.”
Flurry of fours
England managed just one boundary in the last 10 overs of their innings, whereas Pakistan sprinted to 36 for none courtesy of nine fours.
“I probably got the toss wrong,” said Morgan.
Pakistan bowled really well given the conditions; the ball held up a little bit and their slower balls and their variations worked very effectively on the wicket.”
Sharjeel struck David Willey for two fours in the first over of the reply and Pakistan never looked back.
He also hoisted Adil Rashid for two sixes in an over to go to fifty before he holed out off the same bowler.
But by then Pakistan were 107 for one and this day/night game was as good as won.
Latif completed a maiden Twenty20 fifty when he hit Ali for six over mid-wicket.
Babar Azam (15 not out) ended the match with a four off Liam Plunkett.
Hales (37) and Roy (21) were the only Engand batsmen to pass 20.
Pakistan had an early scare when Wasim, who conceded just two runs in the first over of the game, was struck a painful blow in the next over when a hard-hit shot from Hales reared up off a practice pitch and hit him on the head.
But he returned to stop England’s innings in its tracks.
Roy, a good straight hitter, was lbw when trying to reverse-sweep Wasim.
England then lost two wickets in two balls to be 67 for three.
Hales was clean-bowled on the sweep by Wasim off the last ball of the ninth over.
The next delivery saw Joe Root (six) tamely upper-cut Hasan Ali to Shoaib Malik at short third man.
Buttler got off the mark by cover-driving Ali for four before he holed out after slicing Riaz offside.
England’s innings never recovered with wicket-keeper Ahmed catching opposing skipper Morgan (14) off Riaz to leave the hosts 110 for six.